“ONENESS” WITH CHRIST MEANS KEEPING TORAH, 26.07.18
Followers of Yeshua/Jesus have been clearly instructed by the Word of God regarding His expectations and acceptable social behaviour. “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever” (I John 2:15-17). “But whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God is truly made perfect. We know that we are in Him by this—whoever claims to abide in Him must walk just as He walked”(I John 2:5,6). We are called to a higher walk, to be one with Christ Jesus/Yeshua Ha-Mashiach, to walk as He walked, which does not include participating in worldly lusts of the flesh.
We have special status by virtue of our affiliation with Jesus Christ/Yeshua Messiah. Because we have been given His very special gift – the Holy Spirit – we have a unique position of what is referred to as “oneness,” expressed as “I am in my father, and you are in me, and I in you” (John 14:20). This is exclusive to believers, as the unbeliever “cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you” (John 14:17). I have heard spiritual leaders make statements to the effect that “everyone is born with the Light and the Truth in them, they just get it beat out of them by the time they’re 5;” but this, according to Scriptures, is not correct. We are not born with such connection; we must receive it by inviting the Holy Spirit to come in and live with us by our acceptance of Christ Jesus/Yeshua Messiah as our Lord and Saviour. No one is born into that position. That is why such process is referred to as being born again ( in John 3:7 Nicodemus is told, “Ye must be born again”). This is a spiritual rebirth. Through this, we acquire “oneness” with Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
It is through that very special position of oneness that it becomes possible to “take up our Cross and follow Him” (Lk.9:23; Matt.10:38; Mk.8:34). While some people question this, God would not ask us to do something without making it possible for us to do so. “And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness” (I John 3:3,4). This means we are without excuse.
“Torah is the mark for which we are to aim. It is God’s standard of righteousness. Sin is our failure to hit that mark. And we all do fail to hit the mark. Sin, properly defined, is transgression of Torah. There is a point at which the Torah aims. The bull’s-eye of Torah, the careful aim of Torah, is the perfect Messiah. This is why Paul wrote in his epistle to the Romans: “Messiah is the end of the law [Torah]” (Rom.10:4). Unfortunately, Christians have traditionally misunderstood Paul’s words to mean that Messiah is the cancellation of the Torah. The Greek of Romans 10:4 is best understood to mean that Messiah is the “goal” of The Torah. The Greek word telos, which is translated as “end,” is the same word we use in English words like telephone, television and telescope. Telos implies arrival at a goal. The sound of one’s voice on the telephone arrives at the goal of the telephone on the other end. That reading fits the context of Romans 10:4 as well: Messiah is the destination at which the journey of Torah arrives. Yet there is an end for which the Torah reaches. Paul writes, “Messiah is the end of the Torah,” and again in his epistle to the Galatians he writes, “The law [Torah] has become our tutor to lead us to Messiah” (Galatians 3:24). In this sense, Messiah is the goal of the Torah. Is Messiah to be understood as the ending of the Torah then? No. He is the end, but not the ending. He is the goal of the Torah, but not the termination of it. In fact, He Himself said, “Do not think that I came to abolish the law [Torah] (Matt.5:17).” (Hayesod, p.1.21, 1.22).
“You know that Yeshua appeared in order to take away sins, and in Him there is no sin. No one who abides in Him keeps on sinning; no one who sins has seen Him or known Him. Children, let no one mislead you! The one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as Yeshua is righteous” (I John 3:5-7). Hebraic definition of sin is lawlessness, so the breaking of Torah, is lawlessness; sin is lawlessness; therefore, keeping Torah remains a requirement; we simply carry that out by focussing on what Yeshua Messiah said and did during His time on earth. And notice that practicing righteousness is a requirement.
“I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me. . . that they may be one as We are one . . . . and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. . . . . . that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one” (John 17:9-18,23). Notice that His primary focus is on the chosen ones (those the Father gave Him), and not on the world. Notice, too, Yeshua Messiah’s emphasis on the concept of oneness, and the differentiation between being sent into the world to do a specific assignment, while not being of (i.e., not partaking of) the world.
Peter goes on to warn believers: “that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts”(2 Pet.3:3); that “the ignorant and unstable twist (as they also do with the rest of the Scriptures)—to their own destruction. Since you already know all this, loved ones, be on your guard so that you are not led astray by the error of the lawless and lose your sure footing. Instead, keep growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Yeshua the Messiah. To Him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity! Amen” (2 Pet.3:16-18). Peter is cautioning against getting caught in the traps and snares of the world, focussing instead on continued growth in following Yeshua Messiah. Paul advises, “let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” (2 Cor.7:1). We need to walk in oneness with Christ Jesus/Yeshua Ha-Mashiach, not with the world; and even one foot in the world corrupts our walk with Him, interfering with the position of oneness.
© 2018 by Verna Crowther. All rights reserved.
Tree of Life (TLV) Translation of the Bible. Copyright © 2015 by The Messianic Jewish Family Bible Society.
New King James Version (NKJV)
Hayesod The Foundation The Land,The People, and the Scriptures of Israel, First Fruits of Zion, 2010.
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Copyright © 2019 by Verna Crowther. All rights reserved.